The Brewers offense will have a new hitting coach for the 2022 season.
Brewers announce today that the contract of hitting coach Andy Haines will not be renewed for 2022. Assistant hitting coach Jacob Cruz has been advised that he is free to explore other options as the team searches for a new hitting coach.
— Sophia Minnaert (@SophiaMinnaert) October 20, 2021
Haines has been Milwaukee’s hitting coach since 2018. Before then, He was with the Chicago Cubs during 2016 and 2017. First as their minor league hitting instructor, then promoted as their assistant hitting coach.
After the 2020 season, Haines appeared to be on the hot seat after a disappointing offense performance. Many called for his dismissal after the team’s slow start during the 2021 season, but a hot streak in July and August seemed to stop the discussion for a bit.
The Brewers’ offense the last few weeks of the season and playoffs appeared to be the last straw. Players like Willy Adames and Lorenzo Cain gave praise to Haines during the regular season, saying he helped them improve and a credit to why the Brewers were doing well.
The other side of the coin was that two of the team’s biggest hitters, Christian Yelich and Keston Hiura, have been on the decline since the 2019 season. Yelich’s injury obviously was a big part of it and Hiura’s mother went through cancer this year. But, the fact that one of the best teams in baseball suddenly had their offense disappear again and in October would probably cost any hitting coach a job.
The real question will be who the Brewers can get to replace Andy Haines and improve on what he did. For a coach who seemed to be liked and respected by the roster, the team need to find a solid replacement and expected to compete in 2022 and beyond.
The instant reaction from fans obviously had both sides of the coin. Some didn’t think Haines was the real issue:
*clears throat* Andy Haines was most likely not a problem and everything I heard about his process, was stuff I agreed with.
BUT, sometimes you just have to try something else to see if a new voice and message resonates better. https://t.co/8RLlQ3BLep
— Spencer Michaelis (@smichaelis234) October 20, 2021
While others are happy a change is happening.
Andy Haines has been fired. It’s a good day.
Yeli and Keston redemption SZN 2022
— Carson Seeber (Oliver Drake fan account) (@CarsonS_97) October 20, 2021
The Brewers will be plenty busy this offseason. They will need a new hitting coach, most likely an assistant hitting coach and several new offensive weapons to compete in the NL Central next year.
Stearns said he will explore both internal and external candidates for hitting coach. Said he's in no rush to make a hire. More important to get it right. Said there are some good candidates out there.
— Tom (@Haudricourt) October 20, 2021